In a study conducted by MADD (Mother’s Against Drunk Driving), during the years 1999 to 2008 there were a total of 2,050,132 impaired driving accidents. The total cost of these accidents was an estimated $205. 3 billion. That is approximately $6,221 per Canadian. Broken down annually, the estimated cost to Canadians is $20. 53 billion, or approximately $622 per person per year. Besides the cost, fatalities are a massive issue when it comes to driving under the influences.
Young people seem to–often–be the ones making the poor decision to drive impaired. According to a study conducted in 2006, among drivers killed, 38. 2% of 16-19 year old drivers and 45. 4% of 20-25 year old drivers were drunk and/or on drugs. In 1999 to 2008, there was a total of 12,100 impaired driving crashes causing death. Annually, that averages to 1,210 deaths per year. That means there are 1,210 families that lose a parent, child, or other relative every year in Canada.
However, not everyone involved in alcohol and/or drug related crashes ends up dying. In 2008, there were approximately 68,538 people injured due to impaired driving. As most of us know, operating a motor vehicle while impaired is never an intelligent decision. When someone drives under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs, they can cause issues that affect Canadian’s nation-wide. Driving is fun, but drinking and driving is not! Hundreds of people are killed and thousands are injured every year in an accident with a drunk driver.
This issue doesn’t only affect the victim itself, but the families, loved ones and communities as well. Drunk driving amongst teens is a serious issue, and is growing by the minute. Drunk driving is somebody’s choice or somebody’s authorization to get behind the wheel when they are clearly impaired. The scars from a drunk driving accident take an emotional and physical toll on the victim, the families, their loved ones, and their communities. 45% of road accidents amongst teenagers are results of impaired driving.
If the legal age to drive in Canada is 19, and the legal drinking age in Canada is 19, why do they mix? Teens have the highest death rate, more 19 year olds die or are injured than any other age group. Vehicle crashes is the leading death cause amongst 15-25 year olds, 45% of those accidents are due to alcohol. Males account for 87% of the fatally injured drunk drivers. Teenage drunk drivers are more likely to be killed or injured during the summertime and weekends, a smaller amount of accidents happen in the wintertime.
By the time a driver reaches a blood alcohol level of . 10%, they are 51 times more likely to get into an accident than a non-drinking driver. Teenage drunk driving in Canada is a social justice issue, because someone is making the choice to get behind the wheel while intoxicated fully knowing the risks, not only that but they are breaking the law and endangering the lives of others. According to A Victim’s Guide to the Canadian Criminal Justice System there is no minimum penalty for a drunk driver that has caused bodily harm or a death.